Canton Charge edged in preseason action

In an exhibition tune up before the start of the 2014-15 NBA Development League season, the Canton Charge fell to the Erie BayHawks, 90-88, at the Canton Memorial Civic Center on Sunday afternoon.  Erie will tip off their season on Friday night on the road against the Idaho Stampede, while the Charge begin their campaign this Saturday at home against the Delaware 87ers.

Canton got off to a slow start offensively, hitting just 4-of-15 shots as a team in the opening frame.  Meanwhile, Erie used an efficient offensive attack of hitting half their attempts from the field to pull ahead for the 24-15 lead. 

The BayHawks only missed one attempt from the field amidst a 16-6 run to start the second quarter for their largest advantage of the game at 40-21.  The Charge regrouped defensively following the run to force seven turnovers in the final 6:12of the half that created extra possessions to help get back in the game.  Led by Chris Crawford’s nine second quarter points, Canton then chipped away at the deficit to pull within 43-36 at the intermission.

Using their defensive momentum from the end of the first half, the Charge held Erie to 8-of-25 shooting in the third in outscoring them 28-18.  Four Canton players scored five or more points in the period, with the Charge finishing the third on an 11-1 run to pull ahead at 64-61 heading into the final frame.

Competition and intensity amplified for a back-and-forth fourth quarter that featured three lead changes and five ties, including two and three respectively in the game’s final 2:08.  Canton’s Steve Weingarten followed a Crawford miss with the offensive board and bucket to knot the game at 88-88 with 9.9 seconds left.  Erie’s Lenzelle Smith took the ball on the other end on the next possession and hit the game’s winning score on a close range jumper with 1.3 seconds left.

Five Charge players hit double-digit scoring, led by second round draft pick Tristan Spurlock’s 14 points on 6-of-10 shooting with four rebounds and two blocks in 28 minutes.  Open tryout player Jordan Swing netted 14 points on 4-of-6 shooting with four boards and three assists in 27 minutes off the bench.  Crawford finished with 13 points and three steals in 28 minutes, while top draft pick Michael Dunigan posted 10 points, five boards and two assists in just 16 minutes from the center spot.

Erie’s Drew Crawford paced the winners with 19 points on 6-of-11 shooting with six rebounds, four assists and two steals in 30 minutes.  Seth Curry added 14 points, four assists, and two steals in 22 minutes of action.  Kadeem Betts scored 11 points on 5-of-8 shooting with four rebounds in 21 minutes.  The Ohio State alum Smith finished with four points, four boards, and a steal in 31 minutes.

The Charge open the 2014-15 season at home against the Delaware 87ers on Saturday, November 15th at 7:00 p.m.Single game tickets for all 2014-2015 Canton Charge regular season home games are on sale now, starting at just $7! To view the 2014-15 Canton Charge home schedule complete with promotions and special deals, head to www.CantonCharge.com/promotions.

PHOTOS: Cavalier Girls

2014-15 Charge Nation Memberships are on sale now starting at just $5 per game! Premium Memberships are also available with VIP Club access including food, Budweiser & Pepsi products starting at just $40 per game! Group discounts are available for parties of 20 or more, with Fan Experience Packages such as being a part of the high five tunnel or playing on the Charge court! For 2014-15 Charge Nation Memberships, game day promotions and up-to-date information, head towww.CantonCharge.com or call 866-444-1944.

The Canton Charge are part of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Quicken Loans Arena organization and also owned by a group led by Cavaliers Majority Owner and Quicken Loans Founder and Chairman Dan Gilbert. The group also owns and operates the Cleveland Gladiators of the Arena Football League and the Lake Erie Monsters of the American Hockey League, both of which play their games at Quicken Loans Arena in downtown Cleveland.